Photo by Sabrina Ramdoyal

Much like popping on GTA when you’ve got work to do or lending a slim-fit shirt to your mate Chubby Charlie, Machine Head playing a 450 capacity venue seems – in theory – to be a bad idea. Actually, scrap that – it’s downright ludicrous. Tickets for such a gig were seized in mere minutes after going on sale, entering the postboxes of punters with an obscene level of hype attached. Can the Bay Area bruisers hope to live up to expectations tonight?

Of course they can. It’s Machine Fucking Head: One of the most influential, inspirational and indebloodystructable metal bands to emerge this side of Iron Maiden. As the lights fade and Ozzy Osbourne’s Diary Of A Madman obnoxiously booms from the PA system, it’s plain to see just how important Machine Head are to the Nottingham faithful. And when the band stroll on stage, all sense of self-control is completely abandoned and the triumphant roar of ‘Hear me now!’ signals the rise of Imperium. No gimmicks. No frills. Just Machine Fucking Head.

And how do you follow up such a kick-arse, high-octane opening gambit? Well, you could play Beautiful Mourning and Locust straight after… Which is exactly what they do. Machine Head know exactly what their devotees crave and they deliver – for just under two hours, the Rescue Rooms are baptised in the blood, sweat and tears (beers, piss – whatever) of an audience going fifty shades of bonkers to some of the finest metal ever crafted.

The band are just such an overbearingly strong unit – Robb Flynn’s venomous bark duringTen Ton Hammer remains a highlight of the set; Phil Demmel’s incessant love for pulling funny faces never stops being endearing and new bassist Jared MacEachern looks like he’s been in the band since the beginning, albeit having the appearance of a James Hetfield impersonator. Machine Head are tighter than ever, stronger than ever and they just seem like they’re having a right old romp – cramped in a venue about as big as a shoebox, applause and circle pits (lots of circle pits) are all they need.

New track Killers & Kings sparks immense promise for the band’s future, exhuming a swathe of vigour and determination that was slightly lacking on 2011’s Unto The Locust. Basically, Machine Head are on an absolute winner, and if this song’s anything to go by, we should probably start clearing space in our ‘Albums Of The Year’ lists.

While timeless cuts Davidian and Old have security pooing their pants as crowdsurfers throw caution and limbs to the wind, it’s Flynn and Demmel’s elegant, grandiose masterpiece of a guitar solo during Halo that remains the evening’s crowning moment. This is a band that has sold millions of albums, toured the world for over two decades and also happened to tour with a little group called Metallica. Machine Head are legends, and to witness them in such an intimate setting is a truly one-off experience.

Amidst the sea of perspiring, knackered metalheads, it’s one of Robb’s self-deprecating quips that really sums up this band and its fanbase: ‘We never got to be as big as The Beatles.’ You are to us, Robb. You are to us.


Just wrapped a 3 week tour of the US.  


What an awesome run of shows.  I can’t even begin to tell you what an amazing experience it was doing a tour of what is known in “the biz” as B & C markets. I think I mentioned when we announced the tour that the whole point of the tour was to play places that we had never headlined, or hadn’t headlined for a loooong time.  Playing no major markets at all (LA, SF, NY, etc), and playing at least 4 hours from every major market, Machine Head dug deep into the nooks and crannies of the US, to the people who hadn’t seen MH except on a Mayhem Festival or something, and in some cases never seen us at all.  We knew going into it that we’d lose a lot of money doing it, especially by not playing any major markets, but it was a huge, Huge, HUGE success as far as we were concerned.  

Scratch that:  It was plain fucking awesome!!

Setting the bar crazy high was the one / two punch of Fresno, CA and Salt Lake City, UT.  There was a moment during the Salt Lake show where it seriously felt like a European festival show it was so crazy.  The sing-a-long at the end of “Darkness” went on FOREVER!!  They didn’t want to stop!!  It was SO freakin’ rad!!!

Billings, Montana was the next show and again, just EPIC, it was our first time ever playing in there, and they greeted us like returning kings.

Minot, North Dakota was next, and it was just flat out insanity!  I’ll be honest here, I’d never even heard of Minot when our booking agent suggested it, but he said it would be awesome and good lord he was right!  About an hour before showtime, our TM approached me and said a guy wanted to propose to his wife onstage, apparently they both loved Machine Head, both had Darkness Within tattoos of the lyrics, it was so random and cool I said “fuck it”.  And hoping for the dudes sake she said “yes”, LOL.  When it came time, I set up the scenario, (which the girl was completely oblivious to) and man, it was a genuinely sweet moment.  You could tell by the way he was talking to her, looked at her, that he really, really loved her.  

And she said “yes”.  

And the kiss afterwards…? Holy smokes, I thought for a second there, they just might start humpin’ onstage.  

First time for everything.  Very cool moment for Machine Head.

Ft. Wayne, Indiana and Toledo, Ohio were next, both first timers for us, and again, just mind-blowing shows, so intense and passionate. A bunch of friends from Chicago came to the Ft Wayne show, and we had a great hang.  Toledo was just fuckin crazed mayhem, packed to rafters, sweat drenched, and near-religious-experience.  

ROCK USA in Osh Kosh, WI was next, and I already told you about that drunken debauchery.  Though I guess the story got even better because I guess before I puked in bunk alley, I puked all over the bathroom, and apparently locked myself in there for 45 minutes while I was passed out.  OY VEY!!!! 

Nashville TN, has officially been re-named Thrashville TN, because my fuckin GOD!!!  What an crushing show!!  Seriously, unforgettable. First time headlining there in 19 years.  Blew the roof off the joint, and Nashville blew our minds and bodies.

Little Rock, AR and Oklahoma City, Oklahoma were devastating, and it was really cool to see the band supporting us Anti-Mortem play their hometown of Oklahoma City to huge success.  Check them out if you get a chance, great band, great dudes, kinda southern-rock meets Pantera, and some of the nicest dudes around.

The tour ended in Springfield MI, and I don’t know if there has ever been a hotter Machine Head show in history.  NUTZO!  Sweat was dripping from the walls, the fucking ceiling, even our non-sweat-gland-having-drummer was sweating his ass off!!  It was a magical show, people was loosing their marbles.

Thank you so much to everyone who came out these shows for making them so fucking special and amazing, we HAVE to do this again!!

First night of the UK run was in Nottingham last night, and the bar has been already been set for the rest of the UK and Europe, fucking Machine-Head-mania last night.  Our amazing UK press agents Michelle Kerr and Kirstin came out.  We had a great hang with our long-time producer Colin Richardson and his engineer Carl Bown.  Andy Sneap came out, as he and I had hung out the day before at his studio and we tracked a lead I had forgotten to do, DOH!  Between Colin, Sneap and I, after the show, MAN, “The More Things Change” stories were flowing like wine.  As they say, comedy is tragedy over time, LOL.  My face still hurts from laughing so hard, it was a GREAT hang.  Good times with good friends.

We have a day off in Edinburgh Scotland today, hoping to trip around this amazing old city, and take in some of the sites for the first time ever.


Subscribe to The General Journals: Diary Of A Frontman… And Other Ramblings

Visit The General Journals archive:

Nottingham was a killer fucking start to the tour! Photo from @generalhoff

#machineheadlive #killersandkingstour

The European leg of the Killers & Kings tour begins tonight!! Let’s rage!!! #machinehead #killersandkingstour


Bay Area Metal Titans MACHINE HEAD continue their live domination of North America with the announcement of their 21-show U.S. and Canadian trek in support of their debut studio album for Nuclear Blast Entertainment, due out this fall.

With a devastating line up that features support from Finnish heavy metal powerhouse CHILDREN OF BODOM and Dutch symphonic metallers EPICA with American melodic death/thrash openers BATTLECROSS, the tour launches on October 4th in Denver, Colorado and includes five Canadian cities before closing out in Hollywood, California on November 1st.

MACHINE HEAD frontman & guitarist Robb Flynn checks in about the touring line-up and the upcoming shows:

Machine Head raised the bar with concert production for 2012 ‘s “Locust” tour, and now we plan to raise the bar again with our biggest US show yet, and the strongest line-up out there for 2014, PERIOD!! This is a MUST SEE event for any heavy metal fan in America! I am stoked that we were able to join up with our friends in Children Of Bodom, one of the premier power metal bands of our time, and our friends in Battlecross, who we toured with on Mayhem last year, and are going to bring the old-school thrash vibe. Epica’s symphonic metal will add a touch of much needed class to the drunken shenanigans that will surely take place on this raucous tour. Come out and be a part of history ladies and gentlemen!!

CHILDREN OF BODOM frontman & guitarist Alexi Laiho adds: “We’ve rolled with Machine Head quite a few times in the past. My best memories are kick azz shows, parties, camaraderie and vocal coaching from Robb Flynn way back in 2008, so I think we’ll have a good time tearing it up all over North America! Not a bad way to end the long and non stop tour cycle for “ Halo Of Blood ! “

“With this killer line-up, this tour is bound to be a great success,” states EPICA vocalist Simone Simons. “We will bring EPICA to a whole new level and I can’t wait to play the new songs along with the old material overseas.” EPICA guitarist, songwriter, and founding member Mark Jansen shares: “MACHINE HEAD and CHILDREN OF BODOM are bands I listened to as teenager, so it’s really amazing to be on this tour with EPICA.”

BATTLECROSS guitarist Tony Asta contributes the following: “What an honor to be asked to join a tour in support of MACHINE HEAD’s first album release on their new label! We’re really excited to reunite with Robb and the guys, as well as CHILDREN OF BODOM - both legendary bands and friends from last summer’s Mayhem Fest. And we’ll get to see what EPICA is all about. This is a tour with something for every metal head. We can’t wait to bring it brutal throughout the USA & Canada, banging heads and melting faces from coast-to-coast. See you in the pit!”

All tickets go on sale this Friday at 10 AM EST.

Confirmed tour dates for MACHINE HEAD, COB, EPICA, and BATTLECROSS include:

10/04/14 Denver, CO - Summit Music Hall 
10/06/14 Dallas, TX - House of Blues 
10/07/14 Houston, TX - House of Blues
10/09/14 Orlando, FL - Hard Rock Live
10/10/14 Atlanta, GA - Masquerade
10/11/14 TBA
10/12/14 Philadelphia, PA - Electric Factory
10/14/14 Toronto, ON - The Sound Academy
10/15/14 Montreal, QC - Metropolis
10/16/14 New York, NY - Terminal 5
10/17/14 Worcester, MA - Palladium
10/18/14 Cleveland, OH - Agora Theater
10/20/14 Chicago, IL - Concord Music Hall
10/21/14 Milwaukee, WI - The Rave
10/22/14 Minneapolis, MN - Skyway Theater
10/24/14 Saskatoon, SK - O’Brians
10/26/14 Edmonton, AB - Shaw Conference Center
10/28/14 Vancouver, B.C - The Vogue – Vancouver, B.C.
10/29/14 Seattle, WA - Showbox SODO
10/31/14 Oakland, CA - Fox Theater
11/01/14 Hollywood, CA - Palladium

After their work at Jingletown Recording Studios in Oakland California, MACHINE HEAD are completing work on their eighth full-length studio album at Trident Studios in the San Francisco Bay Area. 

Catch up on MACHINE HEAD’s time in the studio via the video blogs hosted on the band’s official YouTube channel:

MH Production Vlog #1 (demos): 
MH Production Vlog #2 (drums): 
MH Production Vlog #3 (guitars): 
MH Production Vlog #4 (bass):

Visit MACHINE HEAD online at

Visit CHILDREN OF BODOM online at

Visit EPICA online at

Visit BATTLECROSS online at



#machinehead #mfnh #killersandkingstour


Thanks so much for all the birthday wishes friends!! It was EPIC indeed!!

Demmel and Jared got the Rock USA crowd to sing “happy birthday” to me, Kerry and Gary from Slayer were side-stage hangin’. As per our long-standing tradition (I think 15 years now) the boys all got me a giant cock cake (this one was a white cock, as opposed to last years giant black cock cake), complete with a balloon in the head that spooged when you cut it (gross and awesome all at the same time!).

Dave’s family and a bunch of friends from Chicago rolled up and we shacked up side-stage and watched Slayer crush, screaming along and banging my head so goddamn hard my neck still hurts.

Got to Skype with the kids and wife, which was really awesome as I hadn’t been able to connect on this tour yet. Then the Chicago Crew and I proceeded to get even more hammered! Brown Eyes and Shock Tops with orange were the bevy’s of the evening.

After a while I was watching Five Finger Death Punch and seeing double and triple, so stumbled back on the bus, where my road crew were savvy enough to put this old man to bed, and then as the Brits say “…it all went pear shaped”

Next thing I know I’m spinning in my bunk, then I’m all 4’s, and then… I puked in bunk alley. DOH!!! My ever-awesome road crew Darian and Rodrigo were angels and cleaned it up for me. And surprisingly, I eel fine this morn.

Cock Cake - check
Slayer on birthday - check
Puking in bunk alley - check


Subscribe to The General Journals: Diary Of A Frontman… And Other Ramblings

Visit The General Journals archive:

Dave McClain on the drums!!
Photo from @mudbilly502gram

#rockusa #machinehead #killersandkingstour #machinefuckingheas

TOLEDO WAS FUCKING KILLER!!! The tour continues to Rock USA today! Photo from @fireball111

#machinefuckinghead #machinehead #machineheadlive #killersandkingstour

Awesome hood improvement found on the road. Which head case drive this?